Have you ever watched a kids movie and been hit with an “Aha” moment? It happens to me often. One, because I still have little kids and will have a reasonable excuse to love and see cartoons a while longer. And two, because I am a visual learner, and God gets that!
I recently watched a Christmas special with my kids. It was a short film entitled “The Gift of the Night Fury” and the story line followed the popular movie “How to train your Dragon.”
In “How to Train Your Dragon” Hiccup became a close friend to the Night Fury, or Toothless as he was named, when he created an adaptation for his tail, enabling him to fly once again. However the adaptation came with an exception, Hiccup had to ride with him in flight to make adjustments to the fin. In effect, they became one when flying – anticipating, feeling, and sensing the needed adjustments during flight.
In this short film “The Gift of the Night Fury” Hiccup made a new fin for Toothless, a fin that allowed him to fly independently. Hiccup “healed” him of sorts, providing independence once again. In the end Toothless made an unbelievable choice. He chose his handicap and dependence on Hiccup rather than the independence and freedom of his own fin. I like to think he chose Unity rather than separation. He chose to need Hiccup.
I find myself thinking that God wants me independent. But does he really? In our western thinking we equate maturity with independence. And therefore I translate my spiritual maturity to mean independently doing it right.
But how possible is that really? I know that I am unable to live independently, in fact the more I pull away from Christ the more I fail and get swallowed up into myself. The more I abide, as in John 15, the more I seem to get it right – in other words Christ in me eases me into obedience and victory.
I resent my weaknesses. I am ashamed of my failings. But maybe I should be embracing them. They are what reminds me and teaches me to choose unity over the separation of independence. Maybe independence is really less of who I really am.
I choose my failings, my handicaps, because it is then when is Christ fully alive and active in me. When I fly in unity it is so much sweeter than flying alone!